The Bethlehem YMCA received a $7,500 grant through the Walmart Foundation, with 44,500 going toward providing free lunches for campers.
continued DePace said because of the new pavilion built on the Y’s grounds, which includes a kitchen with running water, children are often given the opportunity to cook their own meals at lunch time as part of the camp experience.
Construction on the pavilion began in April and it is now finished for campers to enjoy. The 3,200-square-foot structure includes an eating area, room for activities, a food service area, bathrooms and storage space. The entire project cost about $490,000, with $250,000 obtained through grants and $115,000 coming from donations. The remainder was paid by the YMCA.
“To have running water and real bathrooms has been great,” said DePace. “People got their moneys worth.”
The grant will also help to feed children in the “Circle of Champs” program at the Bethlehem YMCA. The program provides fun activities and events throughout the year for children with disabilities or a life-threatening illness. Those children are fed up to three meals a day through the grant money, said DePace.
“We can now provide help to families who really need it to provide lunch for their children, but the grant also helps others involved with the Bethlehem YMCA and everyone attending our camps,” she said.